Running Shoes for women

Best Women Running Shoes & Sneakers in 2021

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Let’s be logical. There is no such thing as the perfect shoe in the world. When it comes to choosing the right pair specifically for yourself, a lot of factors come into play. These can include your weight, overall biomechanics, the shape of your feet, your specific needs and where you go for running. You see, based on these factors, not one shoe will suit every woman out there.

Finding the best running shoes is not easy, especially when there are so many options out there in the market. Whether you are looking for a pair to head out for a few minutes or you are training for a serious marathon. Finding your own ideal match should be your focus and the choice depends on how well the shoes fit and what their primary purpose is.

How To Choose The Right Pair Of Women Running Shoes?

Are you going nuts and overwhelmed with the countless options? Well, take a step back and focus mainly on your top priorities. Shoes mostly come with a tagline on their packaging if they are intended for running or any other specific use. At sport stores, shoes are categorized into different sets based on their cushioning, weight, etc., to make it easy for the buyer to choose the perfect one. 

If you run into a store and find yourself getting confused by the various options, you can check the following features to shortlist the ones you would want to buy for yourself. 


Taking the material of the shoe into consideration is very important. Perhaps the material is too thick for your delicate feet? Is it waterproof? Do they feel comfortable when interacting with your skin? Is the shoe breathable and it won’t cause too much sweating? Keep in mind a few of these factors before choosing a specific one based on your personal preference. You will come across all sorts of shoes ranging from thicker material for cold weather and waterproof ones for rainy days or something breathable. 

Weight of The Shoe

Heavy shoes may provide excellent cushioning, which adds to the comfort. However, lighter shoes may be the best choice for running because they will not make you feel tired quickly. 

Sole Thickness

Shoes with thinner soles can help you run smoothly and naturally without having to feel too odd. Thicker soles offer superior cushioning, which can be useful if you run long distances, especially over uneven roads and terrains. 


Some shoes with very rough and bumpy treads are ideal for rough terrains and hiking etc. Shoes with flat treads can be useful for simple road racing and general jogging. 


The heel-to-toe drop is the difference between the height of the toe and the heel. The higher the number is, the higher the toe is compared to the heel. A smaller number may mean a natural running pattern. People who usually strike their heels the most when running may go for a more considerable heel-to-toe drop. 

Additional shopping tips when buying running shoes:

  • Always order a half or a full size larger than your current shoe size. When you stand on your feet for a while, your feet swell up and may need a little more space. If your shoes are tight, they cannot accommodate your needs and may cause blisters and pain. 
  • Make sure to wear socks. Keep in mind that you will need a little larger size to accommodate wearing socks. 
  • Know your foot shape well. Different people have different needs. Some people may need extra space in the toe area instead of the heel part. 

This post contains affiliate links that compensate A Great Canadian Running Challenge should you make a purchase.  See full disclaimer for more information.

Of course, there is no one perfect pair of running shoes. Based on the experiences and various factors, some of the best shoes to choose from when it comes to different categories are as follows:

Best for Cushioning (For Long Distances, The Extra Cushioning of a Heavier Shoe Might be a Better Option)

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ASICS Women’s Gel-Nimbus 23

The ASICS GEL-Nimbus 23 is one of the newest additions to the collection that features the experience of almost two decades of innovation. This design was constructed by keeping breathability and comfort in mind for long runners. The latest ASICS model is a complete classic that features two GEL cushioning units located in the forefoot and the other in the heel. This provides an overall comfortable experience, especially when landing while you are out on a stroll. These gel pockets offer a reduced forefoot shock and low heel strike impact that will allow you to run smoothly and naturally for extended hours. 

Whether you are up for a long run or will be up on your feet all day running through terrains, this shoe type offers a very responsive feel to the heel because of its FlyteFoam, along with proper arch support in the midsole area. The FlyteFOAM is made from a very lightweight and softer material, allowing you to pick up your foot quickly. Whatever the case may be, this shoe can easily tackle a challenge. It can endure heavy and long-distance runs smoothly by providing excellent shock absorption. It provides the right amount of cushioning in the desired areas, like the toe, to offer a natural feel when transitioning. The 23rd version of this shoe showcases and proves the durability, support and comfort provided clearly for long-distance runners. 

Pros: Provides a smooth transition, high cushioning, protective and comfortable for extended runs.

Cons: The outsole rubber tends to wear out quickly. 

Best For Speed and Light Weight

Skechers Women Go Run

Skechers Gorun Razor 7

The Skechers GOrun Razor 7 is unbelievably lightweight with a low-drop heel design geared to offer the fastest running speed, especially when running marathons. For this reason, this shoe is also an all-time favourite of many ardent runners. 

This shoe has the same features as its predecessor. Still, it is very lightweight and its easy mesh upper offers high durability and traction over its older counterparts of the same collection. The shoe utilizes the rubber midsole that provides an excellent level of cushioning and a high-speed and responsive ground-to-foot reaction, especially while running. The smooth and easy heel-to-toe transitioning, which is the priority of runners, is offered by this shoe type, making it a top favourite.

Users mention the key benefit to this shoe type is its soft and bouncy features that allow them to pick up the pace easily while running. This shoe’s super lightweight allows the runners to run comfortably for extended periods without getting exhausted. 

Pros: Very lightweight, comfortable and accommodating to the foot’s shape

Cons: Bit unstable and takes too much space for smaller feet.

Best for Trail Running

Salomon SpeedCross 4 GTX Womens Trail Running Shoe

Salomon SpeedCross 4 GTX Women’s Trail Running Shoe

You can go on grand adventures with the Salomon Speedcross 4 GTX; the brand focuses highly on crafting shoes that are ideal for outdoor sports by incorporating new technology as compared to its predecessors. The technology used in Speedcross is specifically for trail running purposes, including their SensiFit uppers to offer a snug and comfortable fit by allowing the foot to nestle securely. The Optivibe foam reduces muscle fatigue, and their Contagrip technology allows for a proper grip when trail running. Their Quicklace allows proper tightening, and the 3D Advanced Chassis offers motion control.

The technology used in the shoe outclasses everything else and has a lot to offer. Overall, the shoe’s high surface area in the underfoot offers proper stability and enhanced traction during heavy trail running. 

You can smoothly and steadily go a long distance with these shoes on any terrain type. Salomon Speedcross offers a proper extensive grip on top of being lightweight while also being weatherproof for outdoorsy conditions. It is the ideal match for someone who is not afraid to be out and about in the muddy and wet terrain. 

Pros: Durable, waterproof, offers excellent traction.

Cons: Not so breathable and a bit stiff when worn, which can cause discomfort.

Best for Training

ASICS Gel-Kahana 8 Women Running Shoes

ASICS Women’s Gel-Kahana 8 Running Shoe

The ASICS WOMEN’S GEL KAHANA will be the ideal choice for training as the shoe has been reviewed by plenty of runners and is known to offer the needed stability and durability every runner aims for. The shoe’s exterior is pretty rugged and features the GEL cushioning for shock absorption and added comfort. The midsole SpEVA material reduces the midsole breakdown while offering a high bounce back property when running. Its Trusstic System Technology decreases the weight of the sole without compromising on its structural stability. 

The outsole that is geared towards rough experiences offers excellent traction on all kinds of terrains. 

This shoe can cater to all kinds of uses, be it an outdoor workout or a run in the heavy terrains where the rubber may need to meet with rough surfaces. 

Pros: Inexpensive, durable, wide toe area.

Cons: heavy and offers poor traction.

Best Overall (Overall Best Fit According To Size, Support and Track)

Adrenaline GTS 21

Brooks Women’s Adrenaline GTS 21

Brooks’ latest version of Adrenaline is finally made after tweaking the past released shoes of this series and is one of the best-sellers by this brand. I mean, why not? It is one of the shoes in the market that has managed to stick around for two decades. The new Adrenaline GTS focuses on everything runners love about Brooks shoes for the past twenty years. 

Adrenaline GTS 21 features an engineered mesh that offers a secure fit that hugs your feet comfortably while allowing excellent breathability. It also features GuideRails which provides the much-needed support and helps you move comfortably with excessive movement that is needed while running. 

DNA LOFT cushioning allows you to extend your feet from the midsole to the toe area very naturally and allows a smooth transition from your heel to toe, making you run effortlessly. The shoe also allows a nice width which gives your feet enough room to spread out naturally. 

Pros: Reliable, features GuideRails, Durable for long runs.

Cons: High heel drop.

Best Cheap Running Shoes for Everyday Use

GEL Contend Shoes

ASICS GEL-Contend 7

The ASICS GEL-CONTEND 7 offers the ultimate all-in-one experience for female runners.  This shoe provides the necessary support, incomparable comfort, and durability, allowing you to be on your toes all day. The design and technology used in this product beat its competitors, especially when it comes to the price. It features an engineered mesh upper that allows the foot to stretch naturally and make its space offering an excellent fit. It also allows the shoe to have superior breath-ability and dry up quickly if it gets wet.

The rearfoot GEL technology provides excellent cushioning while locking the heel to avoid excessive movement, which can be exhausting. It also features AMPLIFOAM that offers good durability in the midsole area allowing the wearer to experience the ultimate comfort and shock absorption because of the OrthoLite sock liner. The GEL-CONTEND 7 features stitched overlays that offer additional security, thus avoiding slipping during running.

The shoe provides a very natural progression while running, especially during the toe-off interval, allowing the runner to move forward with the least effort and confident strides. The external includes a full rubber sole that offers high durability and secure footing when running. 

Pros: Provides extreme support and comfort

Cons: Wears down easily

The Takeaway

With all the different brands and styles, you want to end up choosing the right fit for you. It is best to go to the store and try on the right shoe. You may want to walk a little bit and maybe jog to see if they fit your feet well and provide enough reliable support. Pay very close attention to whether the shoe is causing any discomfort in any part of your foot. If you get confused by the options, you can always refer to a particular shoe type’s listed features to make your final choice. In the end, always choose something that will offer you the needed support and comfort for the extended miles you plan to put in them. 

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